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Hernouten (better known in this country by the name of Moravian Brethren), with a beard silvered by age. "Father," says the officer, "shew me a field where I can set my troopers a foraging." "Presently," replied the HernouThe good old man walked before, and conducted them out of the valley. After a quarter of an hour's march, they found a fine field of barley. "There is the very thing we want," says the captain. "Have patience for a few minutes," replied his guide: "You shall be satisfied." They went on, and, at the distance of about a quarter of a league farther, they arrived at another field of barley. The troop immediately dismounted, cut down the grain, trussed it up, and remounted. The officer, upon this, says to his conductor, "Father, you have given yourself and us unnecessary trouble: the first field was much better than this." "Very true, Sir," replied the good old man, "but it was not mine."-This stroke (says my author, and that justly) goes directly to the heart. I defy an atheist to produce me any thing once to be compared with it. And, surely, he who does not feel his heart warmed by such an example of exalted virtue, has not yet acquired the first principles of moral taste..
Mr. Addison, in a letter to a friend, makes the following declaration. "Believe me when I assure you, I never did, nor ever will, on any pretence whatsoever, take more than the stated and customary fees of my office. I might keep the contrary practice concealed from the world, were I capable of it, but I could not from my. self; and I hope I shall always fear the re proaches of my own heart more than those of
all mankind." This reflected great honour on Mr. Addison's integrity.
"TRUE honour, though it be a different principle from religion, yet is not contrary to it. Religion embraces virtue, as it is enjoined by the laws of God; honour, as it is graceful and ornamental to human nature. The religious man fears, the man of honor scorns to do an ill action. The latter considers vice as something that is beneath him, the other as something that is offensive to the Divine Being; the one as what is unbecoming, the other as what is forbidden."
But what mistaken notions have some men of honour! They establish any thing to them selves for a point of honour, although it is contrary both to the laws of God and of their country. "Timogenes was a lively instance of one actuated by false honour. Timogenes would smile at a man's jest who ridiculed his Maker, and at the same time run a man through the body that spoke ill of his friend. Timogenes would have scorned to have betrayed a secret that was entrusted with him, though the fate of his country depended upon the discovery of it. Timogenes took away the life of a young fellow in a duel, for having spoken ill of Belinda, a lady whom he himself had seduced in her youth, and betrayed into want and ignominy. After having ruined several poor tradesmen's families who had trusted him, he sold his estate to satisfy his creditors; but, like a man of honour, disposed of all the money he
could make of it in paying off his play debts, or, to speak in his own language, his debts of honour."
Virtue and honour were deified among the antient Greeks and Romans, and had a joint temple consecrated to them at Rome; but afterwards each of them had separate temples, which were so placed, that no one could enter the temple of honour without passing through that of virtue; by which the Romans were continually put in mind, that virtue is the only direct path to true glory. Plutarch tells us, that the Romans, contrary to their usual custom, sacrificed to honour uncovered; perhaps to denote that, wherever honour is, it wants no covering, but shews itself open to the world. Dr. South observes, that princes may confer honours, or rather titles and names of honour. But they are a man's own actions which must make him truly honourable; and every man's life is the herald's office, from whence he must derive and fetch that which must blazon him to the world; honour being but the reflection of a man's own actions shining bright in the face of all about him, and from thence rebounding upon himself.
The Spanish historians relate a memorable instance of honour and regard to truth. A Spanish cavalier, in a sudden quarrel, slew a Moorish gentleman, and fled. His pursuers soon lost sight of him, for he had, unperceived thrown himself over a garden wall. The owner, a Moor, happened to be in his garden, was addressed by the Spaniard on his knees, who acquainted him with his case, and implored concealment. "Eat this," said the Moor (giving him half a peach:) "you now know
that you may confide in my protection." He then locked him up in his apartment, telling him that, as soon as it was night, he would provide for his escape to a place of greater safety. The Moor then went into his house, where he had but just seated himself, when a great crowd, with loud lamentations, came to his gate, bringing the dead body of his son, who had just been killed by a Spaniard. When the shock of surprise was a little over, he learnt, from the description given, that the fatal deed was done by the very person then in his power. He mentioned this to no one, but, as soon as it was dark, retired to his garden, as if to grieve alone, giving orders that none should follow him. Then accosting the Spaniard, he said, "Christian, the person you have killed is my son: his body is now in my house. You ought to suffer; but you have eaten with me, and I have given you my faith, which must not be broken." He then led the astonished Spaniard to his stables, mounted him on one of his fleetest horses, and said, "Fly far, while the night can cover you: you will be safe in the morning. You are, indeed, guilty of my son's blood; but God is just and good, and I thank him I am innocent of your's, and that my faith given is preserved."
This point of honour is most religiously observed by the Arabs and Saracens, from whom it was adopted by the Moors of Africa, and by them was brought into Spain. The following instance of Spanish honour may still dwell in the memory of many living, and deserves to be handed down to the latest posterity. In the year 1746, when we were in hot war with Spain, the Elizabeth of London, Captain Wil
liam Edwards, coming through the gulf from Jamaica, richly laden, met with a most violent storm, in which the ship sprung a leak, that obliged them, for the saving of their lives, to run into the Havanna, a Spanish port. The captain went on shore, and directly waited on the governor; told the occasion of his putting in, and that he surrendered the ship as a prize, and himself and his men as prisoners of war, only requesting good quarter. No, Sir," replied the Spanish governor : "if we had taken you in fair war at sea, or approaching our coast with hostile intentions, your ship would then have been a prize, and your people prisoners; but when, distressed by a tempest, you come into our ports for the safety of your lives, we, the enemies, being men, are bound as such, by the laws of humanity, to afford relief to distressed men who ask it of us. We cannot, even against our enemies, take advantage of an act of God: you have leave, therefore, to unload your ship, if that be necessary, to stop the leak; you may refit her here, and traffic so far as shall be necessary to pay the charges: you may then depart; and I will give you a pass, to be in force till you are beyond Bermuda. If after that you are taken, you will then be a lawful prize; but now you are only a stranger, and have a stranger's right to safety and protection.-The ship accordingly departed, and arrived safe in London.
A remarkable instance of the like honour is recorded of a poor unenlightened African negro, in Captain Snelgrave's account of his Voyage to Guinea. A New England sloop, trading there in 1752, left a second mate, William Murray, sick on shore, and sailed without him.